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Vax To School Initiative Expands with 120 Pop-up Vaccination Sites

 Governor Hochul visiting a local vaccination center.
Darren McGee/Darren McGee- Office of Governor
Governor Hochul visiting a local vaccination center.

Governor Kathy Hochul is continuing the push to get more eligible students to get vaccinated against COVID-19 by announcing 120 pop-up locations across the state in the next three months.

"The delta variant just skyrocketed, the number of cases because of the delta variant. And as you’re seeing cases all over America, the children are the ones getting sick."

She appealed to parents to convince them if they’ve been hesitant in the past to get their 12 to 17 year-olds vaccinated to do so soon because the Delta variant doesn’t appear to be slowing down.

"So parents, protect your kids. This is the combination of their seatbelt, their bike helmet, car seat. Everything else that you would do naturally to protect your child, getting them vaccinated should be just as natural as that. It’s safe. It’s smart, and you will not regret it," said Hochul.

Hochul says only about 54% of 12 to 17 year-olds have been vaccinated. The State will host several pop-up Vax-To-School sites and vans. She says the on-site settings will hopefully encourage parents to get their sons or daughters vaccinated by seeing how easy the vaccination process is.

"To make sure that parents first of all visibly see how easy this is. And in partnership with the schools, let’s get the parental consent forms in the hands of parents. Make it normal. Make it seem, just another routine just like you couldn’t go to kindergarten without your vaccinations my friends. We all know that. And this program will run through the fall."

As a parent herself, Governor Hochul wondered what it must be like for parents of children who become ill from COVID after resisting having them vaccinated against COVID-19.

"When they had their child unvaccinated, the child gets sick or worse. I’m going to guess as a mom that is a guilt you do not want to live with," said Hochul.

So far, the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine has only been fully approved for ages 16 and above. However, 12 to 15 year-olds are eligible to receive the vaccine under Emergency Use Authorization. For more information about scheduling a free vaccination go to COVID 19.

John Smith has been waking up WAER listeners for a long time as our Local Co-Host of Morning Edition with timely news and information, working alongside student Sportscasters from the Newhouse School.